Postdoc advertisement. How social norms emerge and change in on-line communities. Extended deadline ! 09/12/2021

The Laboratory of Agent Based Social Simulation (LABSS) at the Institute of Cognitive Sciences and Technologies of the National Research Council of Italy (CNR) is opening a post-doc position for investigating how social norms emerge and change in on-line communities and the extent to which they  affect the debate in the online context, e.g., spreading of misinformation and “fake news”, hate speech, etc. This line of research will contribute to the research agenda of the EU-funded HUMANE-AI NET, a network that brings together top European research centers, universities and key industrial champions interested in developing AI-systems capable of “understanding” humans, adapting to complex real-world environments, and appropriately interacting in complex social settings.

The appointment will be for one year (12 months) and it may be extended for an additional period. According to his/her experience, the successful candidate will contribute to this line of research through either a computational approach or an experimental approach.

Job description 

Strong and highly motivated candidates with a background in computer science, computational social science or experimental social sciences are invited to apply. Alternative Phd programs with a strong focus on modelling and/or empirical testing will also be considered.

The candidate experience should match one of the following two:

  • Programming skills (e.g., Python, C++), knowledge of agent-based simulation platforms (e.g., NetLogo) and interest in in the modeling of human and social interactions.
  • Experience with the design of laboratory and on-line experiments (O-tree, Z-tree), knowledge of statistical data analysis tools (e.g., R).

Candidates should have substantial methodological expertise in quantitative analysis of social dynamics. Previous experience with working on social norms’ dynamics is a plus.

She/he will be creative, independent, with a willingness to thrive in a highly interdisciplinary environment, enjoying discussions in a creative and stimulating atmosphere. The post-doc fellowship will be expected to produce high-quality research on the project and to publish the results of the research in international peer-reviewed journals and conferences.

She/he will be recruited by the Laboratory of Agent Based Social Simulation, a highly interdisciplinary research group working at the intersection among cognitive, social and computational sciences. It is situated within the Institute of Cognitive Sciences and Technologies at the Italian National Research Council, and conveniently located near the central train station in Rome, Italy.

The working language is English.

Starting from:   The successful applicant is expected to start on January 3rd 2022, or as soon as possible thereafter.

Employment Terms and Conditions

The selected candidate will be appointed as a research fellow (known as “assegnista di ricerca”) for a period of one year (12 months). The fellowship (known as “assegno di ricerca”) is tax free under Italian legislation, and only social charges apply (about 11%). The gross amount of the fellowship is € 19,367.00 per year.  The salary may increase during the second year. The position will also include additional funding for conducting research and traveling to conferences.

There are no teaching obligations.

PhD is not a requirement. We will also consider candidates who are nearing the end of their PhD.


Applications should be sent on-line by 9 December 2021. Application form in plain paper must be written according to the fac-simile attached to the call announcement (Annex A – Allegato A), which is available at the following links:



In addition, applicants are requested to enclose with their applications the following documents in English. Please compile these documents as a single pdf file and send them to

  • A letter of application (max 1 page), outlining how the applicant’s expertise could productively contribute to the understanding of social dynamics, highlighting whenever possible links with the above described topics.
  • One research article (not necessarily published yet)
  • Two letters of recommendation

 Shortlisted candidates may be asked for an interview.

For more information about the project, please contact: and

We look forward to applications from all sexes and birth backgrounds, functionalities and life experiences.


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